Grammar Lessons: Present Continuous

Present Continuous: Definition

The verb form used for actions or events that are happening or developing now.

For example:

  • The kids are watching TV.
  • My mom is coooking something delicious at home.
  • I am making a cake for the birthday party.
  • She is doing her homework.
  • He is checking his Instagram account.

Present Continuous: Uses

The present progressive tense is the tense that expresses:

Actions happening now I am doing my homework
Actions that will occur in the near futureI am teaching a class tomorrow morning
Temporary states Her mother’s living with her at the moment.
Repeated Temporary events I’m not drinking much coffee these days.
Gradual changeMaria, 37, is getting better
Plans and arrangementsWe’re moving to Cambridge in July.

Present Continuous

Positive and Negative Statements

These are some examples of affirmative and negative statements using the present continuous

Positive SentenceNegative Sentence
I am teaching a classI am not teaching a class
You are doing your homeworkYou aren’t doing your homework
She is cookingShe isn’t cooking
He is planning a lessonHe isn’t planning a lesson
It is workingIt is not working
We are playing We are not playing 
They are taking a napThey aren’t taking a nap

Interrogations

These are some examples of questions using the present continuous

Positive QuestionsNegative Questions
Are you teaching a class?Aren’t you teaching a class?
is he working now?isn’t he working now?
is she making dinner?Isn’t making dinner?
is it raining there?isn’t it raining there?
Are they studying?Aren’t they studying?

Present Continuous: Passive Voice

passive voice is a type of a clause or sentence in which an action, or an object of a sentence, is emphasized rather than its subject. Simply, the subject receives the action of the verb.

Active Voice Passive Voice
I am reading a storyA story is being read to me
She is singing a songA song is being sung by her
The carpenter is making furniture. Furniture is being made by the carpenter.

Present Continuous: Tag Questions

These are some examples of Tag Questions with the Present cotinuous:

Negative TagShe is going to the beach, isn’t she?
Negative TagWe are learning English, aren’t we?
Positive TagWe aren’t doing that, are we?
Positive TagHe isn’t watching TV, isn’t he?
Present Continuous

Present Progressive to Talk about the future

The present continuous can refer to the future. It shows that we have already decided something and usually that we have already made a plan or arrangements:

Affirmative Sentences

These are some examples of Affirmative sentences using the present continuous to talk about the future:

  1. My dad is visiting us next week
  2. I am teaching a class tomorrow
  3. He is making dinner tonight
  4. She is doing her homework later tonight
  5. We are playing soccer tonight, will you join us?
  6. I am taking the train to Paris tomorrow.

Negative Sentences

These are some examples of negative sentences using the present continuous to talk about the future:

  1. James isn’t working tomorrow morning
  2. Linda isn’t making dinner for us, we have to prepare something.
  3. I am not meeting anybody tonight
  4. We are not having a staff meeting next week
  5. She is not staying with me tonight, I am gonna drive her home.
  6. I am not going to watch TV after school

Questions

These are some yes or no questions that use the present continuous to talk about the future

  1. is she working next week?
  2. Are you watching any movies tonight?
  3. Are you going to the cinema this weekend?
  4. Are you having a party for your birthday?
  5. Is she running with us tomorrow?
  6. Is your grandma visiting us next week?

These are some wh-questions that use the present continuous to talk about the future

  1. Where is she working next week?
  2. What movie are you watching tonight?
  3. Who is she meeting with tonight?

Present Continuous Exercises:

These are some present continuous exercise to help you understand this topic more:

More Information

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